The 66 occurrences of Justification/Righteousness in Romans:Volume 5, Number 32
Created Date: September 4, 2021
Posted Date: September 4, 2021
Our last study examined “The Power of the Gospel of Christ revealed to The Apostle Paul;” “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”. Note that the gospel of Christ reveals the righteousness of God from Faith to faith. This study will examine six (6) Greek words translated variously as righteous, righteousness, just and justification that occur a total of 66 times in Romans. It’s worthwhile to review all 66 occurrences of these words, but since there’s not enough space to include them all here, I’ve tried to summarize them. Each Greek word is listed below with the number affixed by Strong and Thayer; the number of times they occur in the New Testament (NT) and in Romans; the definition of each and finally, a quote from several verses in which they appear in Romans.
1) “Dik’aios” (G1342)
This basic Greek word conveys in English the thought of righteous or just. It's found 81 times in the NT King James Version (KJV) translated as “righteous” 41 times, “just” 33 times, right (5); “meet” (2). The Holy Spirit inspired the Apostle Paul to use it 7 times in Romans and seven is the Biblical number for Spiritual perfection. It’s defined as “fulfilling all claims which are right and becoming. A right state, (of which God and His Word is the standard) so that no fault or defect can be detected, innocent, faultless, guiltless, approved of or acceptable of God, etc.” In Romans, it occurs first inwhere it is translated “just” in the phrase “The just shall live by faith.” The Holy Spirit inspired this truth in and Paul stresses it by quoting it three times; here in Romans, in and in . The fact that “The just shall live by faith” has been true since Adam. A study of all seven occurrences in Romans is recommended but the following two give us the idea: “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” ; “For as by one man's (Adam’s) disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one (Jesus Christ) shall many be made righteous.” .
The Greek language of the Bible uses various suffixes with the Greek “dik’aios” to express different aspects of justification/righteousness; the following 5 are found in Romans:
2) “Dikaiosu’ne” (G1343)
Occurs 92 times in the NT, always translated “righteousness.” Paul uses it 36 times in Romans, by far the most frequent in any NT book. It describes “the state of someone who is as he/she ought to be, the condition acceptable to God.” It occurs first in Romans 1:17, “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” Thus, Romans 1:16 - 17 clearly teaches that the Gospel of Christ reveals the righteousness of God from faith to faith, as was discussed in our last study.states that the righteousness of God is manifested (made visible or known what has been hidden or unknown) “by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all who believe.” The last occasion of the word “righteousness” in Romans wraps up its use with the truth: “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” . To appreciate the “kingdom of God” it’s necessary to understand the word “kingdom” consists of the two words “king” and “dominion,” so it refers to the sphere or area in which a King reigns. In this passage, “kingdom” refers to God’s sovereignty in His sphere of operation. Our present world is presently under the dominion of Satan as he is the prince and the power of this world who works in unbelievers, . On the other hand, believers are part of the Kingdom of God, which cannot be confused with the Kingdom that God promised Israel here on earth. That will not come to fruition until Christ returns at the end of the Tribulation to the Mount of Olives and rules the earth through Israel.
Paul later explains the Kingdom to which believers are a part during this Age of Grace: “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet (the two Greek words translated “which hath made us meet” mean “to enable us or to qualify us, to equip us with adequate power”) to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the ‘kingdom of his dear Son:’”. The Kingdom of His dear Son,” or, as it should be “the Kingdom of His Son of Love,” refers to the sphere above all heavens and the sovereignty of God’s beloved Son Who was made the Head of all things to His Church, which is His body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all; , and .
3) “Dikaio’o” (G1344)
Found 40 times in the NT, it is translated “justify” 37 times, “be freed” once, “be righteous” once and “justifier” once. It means “to render (that is, show or regard as) just or innocent: be righteous, to render righteous or such as ought to be.” Paul uses it 15 times in Romans, by far the most frequent of any NT book. Three in the Bible is the number of Divine perfection and five is the number of grace; 3 times five equal fifteen, which therefore refers to acts wrought by the energy of Divine grace. Its first appearance in Romans is: “(For not the hearers of the law are just [dik’auis - G1342] before God, but the doers of the law shall be ‘justified’…)”. And since Jesus Christ is the only Man who fulfilled the Law, believers; “Being ‘justified’ freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” . Its last appearance in Romans: “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that ‘justifieth.’” .
4) “Dikai’oma” (G1345)
Occurs 10 times in the NT, translated righteousness 4 times, ordinances 3 times, judgement once, judgements once and justification once. It’s found most frequently in Romans where it occurs 5 times. It is defined as “an equitable deed; by implication a statute or decision: - judgment, justification, ordinance, righteousness. that which has been deemed right so as to have force of law; what has been established, and ordained by law, an ordinance; a judicial decision, sentence.” It is first used in Romans to describe unbelievers “Who knowing the ‘judgment’ of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”. It last appears in where we need the context to understand its teaching: (verse 2) “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (Verse 3) For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: (verse 4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” .
5) “Dikai’oma” (G1347)
Occurs twice in Romans (nowhere else in the NT). It is translated justification, the meaning of which is “acquittal (for Christ’s sake): - justification; the act of God declaring men free from guilt and acceptable to him.” “Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.”. “Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness (1345) of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.” .
6) “Dikaiokrisi’a” (G1341)
Used only once in the entire NT; here in Romans where it is translated “righteous judgment:” “But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;”.
The teaching of Romans is clear that the Gospel of Christ that was never revealed by God before the risen Lord Jesus Christ revealed it to the Apostle Paul was that The Word of God has always revealed God’s righteousness to mankind. Abel, Enoch, Noah and Abraham were made righteous because they believed the Word of God to them. The Law God gave Moses for Israel revealed what was required of man to be righteous before God. (It was and is impossible for any human being to follow the law perfectly; it was given to show mankind their need for a Savior.) However, those who adhered to that Law because they believed God’s Word, that is, by their faith, were made righteous. Finally, The Word of God Who came as Jesus Christ fulfilled the Law perfectly and thus embodied the righteousness of God. For the last almost 2000 years, faith in Him has been and is the only way for anyone to be righteous before God.